New Mitsubishi RVR revealed

December 9th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

Mitsubishi RVR 2010 fq1

The first round of images and details of Mitsubishi’s upcoming compact SUV have just been revealed. Named the RVR, Mitsubishi will launch the new model next year.

Based on Mitsubishi’s 2007 cX concept and previewed in recent official sketches and spy photos, the 2010 RVR is built on the same mid-size platform as the Lancer.

Measuring 4.3 metres long, the new RVR is around 365mm shorter than the mid-size Outlander SUV, that’s been recently updated (read news).

The RVR will be powered by an all-new 1.8 litre MIVEC petrol engine. No word yet on a diesel variant.

This new RVR will be the third Mitsubishi to use the nameplate with the previous two models being built between 1991 and 2002.

Specific technical, pricing and launch details are still to come. Until then, check out the official images in the gallery below.

Mitsubishi NZ launches new Triton & Outlander

November 12th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

Mitsubishi Outlander Launch fq

Mitsubishi Motors NZ has just released it’s new Outlander SUV and Triton ute to the local market this week.

The popular Outlander is back sporting an aggressive styling make-over which includes the company’s trademark “jet fighter” grille, and new comfort, convenience and safety upgrades. Improvements to the Outlander’s engineering include the addition of Hill Start Assist on all models and Super All Wheel Control to V6 models.

“Outlander has performed superbly,” said Mitsubishi Motors New Zealand general manager of sales and marketing Peter Wilkins. “With the option of five or seven seats it integrates well into large families and commercial users like the space, engine options and, of course, the price. “Over the Mitsubishi Outlander Launch rqpast four years, the Mitsubishi Outlander has been the best-selling medium SUV in New Zealand. After such impressive service, it was time for a freshen-up and the new exterior styling and interior appointments have achieved exactly that.”

In addition to the exterior changes, the Outlander interior design has been freshened with the addition of new seat, door and dash trims, leather look to premium models, double stitching, chrome accents and a new instrument cluster. Additional Lancer-Evolution-inspired design cues for the VRX model include aluminium racing style pedals and a sport-type steering wheel.

Technological upgrades for the new Outlander include the inclusion of Mitsubishi’s Super-All Wheel Control system (S-AWC) to V6 models, improvements to power delivery and fuel economy, the addition of Hill Start Assist (HSA) for all CVT and automatic models and USB inputs for audio connectivity.

The new Outlander retains two tried and trusted engine choices.  First, the 2.4-litre DOHC 16 valve MPI MIVEC engine which generates 127 kW of power @ 6,000 rpm and 230 Nm of torque @ 4,100 rpm.  The 2.4-litre engine is mated to a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) with Sports Mode sequential style shift changes.

The higher-spec V6 3.0-litre SOHC 24 valve MPI MIVEC engine now generates 172 kW of power @ 6,250 rpm and 296 Nm of torque @ 3,750 rpm (with 95+ RON fuel).  The V6 benefits from improvements to the all-aluminium engine, including a reduction in intake restriction plus optimised camshaft timing and compression ratio.

“We’ve worked hard to raise the premium appeal of Outlander with our VRX offerings and the 3.0L model, in particular, provides a level of appointment, technology and power to match,” said Mr Wilkins. “We believe that this new range will raise the bar in the small and medium SUV segment. We have excellent coverage from top to bottom and the product’s success to date indicates consumers love Outlander and this model will continue to be a New Zealand favourite.
Mitsubishi Triton

Mitsubishi Triton Launch fqThe new Triton also had its launch this week and has already proved it’s off-road prowess to motoring journalists on a challenging 4WD track.

The 2010 Triton has seen a raft of changes, four-wheel drive models in the 13-strong range receive a new common rail 2.5 litre high-powered turbo-diesel engine; eight models have side and curtain airbags and all but four workhorse variants boast stability and traction control.

“This is a major upgrade for Triton and we’re thrilled with the result,” said Mitsubishi Motors general manager of sales and marketing Peter Wilkins. “We’ve thrown everything but the kitchen sink at it and the class-leading power, torque and safety speak for themselves.

The class-topping power output of 133 kW and 407 Nm is achieved with the manual transmission and generated from a new high-powered engine at 4,000 rpm and 2,000 rpm respectively, representing increases of 11 percent and 15 percent over the previous 3.2 litre power plant.

Mitsubishi Triton Launch rIncreased power has not come at the expense of fuel economy, which, at 8.3 L/100 km, is 9 percent better than the outgoing engine and second equal in the class. Automatic variants provide the same power as the manual, torque is 356 Nm and fuel consumption 9.3 L/100 km.

While the 2WD’s 2.5 litre power plant still generates 102 kW @ 4000 and 319 Nm @ 2000, improvements have been made to fuel economy, which now stands at 8.2 L/100 km for the manual and 8.6 L/100 km for auto variants. These savings have translated to lower CO2 emissions at 214 g/km and 224 g/km respectively.

There are two automatic specifications within the range. The GLS receives a five-speed automatic with Sports Mode, allowing drivers to manually select and hold gears. The rest of the range is equipped with the four-speed auto found in the previous model and Mitsubishi’s Easy Select 4WD transfer.

The GLS also gains Super Select, which, like Easy Select, allows drivers to engage 4WD at speeds up to 100 km/h. Super Select varies with the addition of a viscous centre differential, which, when employed with 4H, allows ‘when-required’ torque transfer between front and rear wheels, improving fuel economy in 4WD.

First to market with active stability control and the inclusion of side and curtain airbags has bolstered Triton’s existing four-star safety rating, which Mr Wilkins says best meets the growing demands of consumers. Mitsubishi Triton Launch s”We’re delighted to lead the market with these critical safety features.”

Along with new bumpers and wheels, Triton’s new wellside tray delivers a squarer finish to the vehicle’s profile. The wellside has been extended by 180 mm and deepened by 55 mm, allowing much-improved capacity for tools and toys. Purchasers of 4WD cab chassis models will benefit from an increased braked towing capacity of 3 tonnes.

Inside, all vehicles receive a new instrument display, centre console and seat trims. All double cab driver’s seats gain height-adjust, offering more versatility for the driver, while the GLX and GLS double cabs have extra seat cushioning and bolstering.

The 2010 range holds something for everyone, including one of New Zealand’s few double cab chassis models. Seven 4WD variants include three manual workhorse GL options — in single and double cab chassis and double cab wellside — and GLX and GLS specifications with double cab wellsides available as manual or auto. The six 2WDs host one manual single cab chassis in GLX format. The remainder are double cab wellside with a manual GL and manual or auto GLX and GLS.

For both the Triton and the new Challenger Mitsubishi is offering its new Diamond Advantage warranty, including a comprehensive 5 year/130,000 km new vehicle warranty, backed up by its 10 year/160,000km power train warranty and a 5 year/130,000km roadside assistance package.
2010 Outlander Pricing

2.4LS – 5 seat CVT                              $41,990
2.4XLS – 7 seat CVT                           $44,990
2.4VRX – 7 seat CVT                           $49,990
3.0L V6 VR — 7 seat A/T                     $49,990
3.0L V6 VRX — 7 seat A/T                   $54,990
2010 Triton pricing

4WD GL single cab chassis manual        $41,990
4WD GL double cab chassis manual       $43,990
4WD GL double cab manual                   $45,990
4WD GLX double cab manual                 $49,990
4WD GLX double cab auto                     $51,990
4WD GLS double cab manual                 $52,990
4WD GLS double cab auto                     $54,990
2WD GL double cab chassis manual       $37,990
2WD GLX single cab chassis manual      $33,990
2WD GLX double cab manual                 $41,990
2WD GLX double cab auto                     $43,990
2WD GLS double cab manual                 $44,990
2WD GLS double cab auto                     $46,990

To find out more information on the new Triton and Challenger models click here to visit the Mitsubishi NZ website.

New Mitsubishi CX due late next year

November 2nd, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

Mitsubishi CX concept rendering

A new rendering released by Mitsubishi is giving a glimpse at the styling for its upcoming ‘CX’ compact SUV. Based on the Concept CX crossover first revealed back in 2007, Mitsubishi’s newest SUV is expected to go on sale in Japan early next year before a global launch late 2010.

The Concept-CX revealed at Frankfurt featured a constant all-wheel-drive system, and the production CX is likely to continue this set-up although no official details have been offered by Mitsubishi.

Mitsubishi is expected to use the CX to showcase a new range of efficient diesel engines, developed to meet strict Euro 5 emissions standards while offering strong performance. The diesel engine range is expected to start with a 1.8 litre four-cylinder, developing 101kW and 279Nm of torque.

Each will likely feature a variable geometry turbocharger to improve output and efficiency, with a diesel particulate filter and a diesel oxidation catalyst to keep emissions within strict Euro 5 standards.

The CX will enter Mitsubishi’s SUV range below the updated Outlander, with the Pajero and upcoming 2010 Challenger topping the line-up.

Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X updated for 2010

October 13th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

Mitsubishi Lancer EVO X 2010 2

Mitsubishi has done some minor upgrades to its Japanese-spec Lancer Evolution X as part of the car’s mid-cycle update. Although the changes are limited to the Japanese market at this stage they may be included in NZ spec models by early next year.

Coming in for the 2010 model year, the car picks up thicker side skirts and a redesigned bumper that’s 1.5kg lighter than the current version. The weight saving comes from the use of lighter plastics up front.

Inside, a new full-colour multi-function LCD display in the centre of the instrument cluster replaces the existing screen, bringing new functions at the same time. Mitsubishi has also added some new interior trim options, with more padding and insulation installed to improve cabin ambience.

For Japan the range-topping GSR Premium Edition loses the optional five-speed manual gearbox, meaning it will be offered exclusively with the six-speed twin-clutch SST.

Mitsubishi Triton GLS 2009 Review

September 11th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

mitsubishi-triton-gls-fq

In the kiwi ute market it’s become a case of ‘go hard or go home’ with potential purchasers now expecting their spending dollars to buy more than ever before. While the Mitsubishi Triton is sometimes overlooked when compared to its competitors from Toyota and Nissan, it’s showing no signs of throwing in the towel and heading home. Instead, it’s ready to go hard and a 2009 model year update brings some new features and capabilities to help it compete.

Providing motivation for the updated Triton is Mitsubishi’s 3.2-litre diesel power plant. Using direct injection and an intercooled turbo the unit pumps out 120kW of power and 343Nm of torque. It’s a strong engine and pulls well making use of the full complement of torque from just 2000rpm. The generous torque figure results in a flexible driving feel. The Triton can work itself off the line briskly and is relaxed at motorway cruising speeds. While there is no doubt the Triton has a handy motor, it’s also a noisy beast. Utes are never librarian quiet but the Triton’s diesel chest thumping and chattering can unfortunately be heard in the cabin at most speeds.

Transmission options include a 5-speed manual and 4-speed automatic unit. Our test vehicle was fitted with the automatic gearbox and while it could have benefitted from another ratio it did a decent job of changing gears. Without being too busy or too lazy it’s workman-like in sending available power to the wheels. Despite the auto box’s impressive work ethic it does deny the Triton very good fuel economy with the quoted consumption figure being 9.9l/100km; we achieved closer to 11l/100km.

Which wheels to power is the job of Mitsubishi’s clever Super-Select 4WD system. This allows four driving modes and can make on-the-fly shifts from 2WD to 4WD at speeds up to 100km/h. The high range 4WD makes use of the centre diff with a viscous coupling unit, but the diff can also be fully locked in this mode by a button in the cabin. When it’s time to really go hard, the Triton’s 4WD low range with permanent locked diff uses the vehicles low-end torque to maintain traction in more testing off-road terrain.

On the tarmac the Triton’s ride and handling are impressive. A double wishbone front and rigid leaf spring rear suspension setup make for a comfortable compliant ride because being hard isn’t always a good thing. Handling is also relatively good for a utility vehicle, some body roll is definitely evident but it doesn’t wobble round when changing direction. While the Triton is mild-mannered around town it’s not a total gentleman and being gentle on the gas pedal is still required to maintain optimum grip in wet conditions. On the downside the Triton’s steering is excessively long in its ratio meaning parking and U-turns require too many wheel turns. Steering feedback and feel is also a notch on the light side.

Aesthetically the Triton is rich with styling features. It’s suitably masculine but marks a significant departure from the straight-lined style of its ute ancestors. It’s the Triton’s curves that set it apart, particularly the curved line that runs along the rear of the double cab separating it from the square tray. Elsewhere the GLS double-cab promotes a tough guy demeanor with its pronounced contrasting wheel arches and metal side steps. A grimacing face incorporates an integrated grille and fog lights housed into a chunky front bumper. Out back, wrap-around jeweled lights flank a tailgate with built in high stoplight. The rear bumper also has a handy built-in step allowing quick access to the rear tray. The tray itself isn’t very long in double cab form but has good depth and width and can handle a 1000kg payload. Overall, the Triton is a bit of a looker but you wouldn’t dare call it a pretty boy. It’s well rounded, distinctively Mitsubishi and is dressed to attract rather than intimidate.

Climb into the cab and your greeted with a detailed and stylish interior that may be a selling point for those looking in search of a work/recreation vehicle. A two-toned split-level dash is a focal point and blue accents are used on the climate knobs, instrument faces and even stitching on the steering wheel. The rounded theme continues inside with sweeping lines in the dashboard and extending into the door inserts. The GLS also receives a multi-function screen that can display a compass, barometer and altimeter if required during adventuring. Fit and finish is fairly sound, not all materials feel high quality but there is a general sense of durability to the Triton’s interior. Switchgear is minimal and well laid out, the only real complaint comes with the stereo which is dated in its appearance and has small untextured buttons not suited for thick fingers.

What’s most impressive about the Triton cabin is the level of space for both rows of seats in the double cab. The front seats are firm but well bolstered with ample head and shoulder room. The rear seat is excellent, there is genuine legroom for passengers of all sizes and this is further accentuated by a slightly reclined seat-back angle. The generous proportions of the rear seat possibly come at the cost of some length in the rear tray but if the back-half of the cabin is going to be regularly used it’s a smart compromise.

The 2009 model update has seen the GLS Triton’s specification list grow with the welcome inclusion of cruise control and 17-inch rims. Other standard equipment includes: leather steering wheel and gear knobs, electric windows, rear power window, air-con and a trip computer.

The 2009 upgrade has also seen the addition of side and curtain airbags, a first for a ute in the kiwi market and making safety one of the Triton’s greatest strengths. The Triton holds a four-star ANCAP safety rating and can boast a level of collision safety comparable to a new passenger vehicle. Dual front airbags are also standard as is ABS with electronic brake force distribution and the passenger airbag can be turned off if a child seat is in use.

So can the Mitsubishi Triton really go hard?

It definitely can, its diesel power source offers strong performer with ample torque and it’s off road pedigree is obvious. So it’s got no issues with rolling up its sleeves and getting dirty, but it has more to offer than just that. The Triton is a solid all rounder and although it’s unlikely to become the obvious choice in the utility vehicle segment it shouldn’t be overlooked either. With it’s passenger-friendly spacious interior, lively styling, and safety credentials it is better suited for work and family dual-purpose duties than it’s direct competitors. So when it comes to ‘Going hard or going home’ the Triton is a machine capable of doing both.

Click through to the next page for a list of specifications.

Price: from $50,990

What we like:

  • Spacious double cab
  • Safety focused
  • Strong diesel engine
  • Exterior styling

What we don’t like:

  • Dated stereo
  • Engine noise
  • Excessive steering wheel turn

Words and Photos: Adam Mamo

Mitsubishi Triton GLS – Specifications

ENGINE
Engine displacement – cc 3,200
Bore and stroke 98.5 X 105.0
Compression ratio 17.0:1
Max power (kW @ rpm) 120 @ 3,800
Max torque (Nm @ rpm) 353 @ 2,000
Valves 16
Fuel consumption – l/100km 9.1 – manual / 9.9 – auto
CO2 – g/km 237 – manual / 258 – auto

DIMENSIONS / WEIGHTS
Overall length with wellside – mm 5,174
Overall width – mm 1,800
Overall height – mm 1,780
Wheel base – mm 3,000
Track front – mm 1,520
Track rear – mm 1,515
Ground clearance – mm 205
Turning circle – m 11.8
Kerb weight – kg (manual [auto]) 1,920 [1,930]
Gross vehicle weight – kg 2,930
Pay load – kg (manual [auto]) 1,010 [1,000]
Maximum front axle load – kg 1,260
Maximum rear axle load – kg 1,800
Seating capacity – persons 5
Towing unbraked – kg 750
Towing braked – kg 2,700

Peugoet steals Mitsubishi’s iMiEV to create iOn

September 10th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

Peugeot iOn fq

Mitsubishi and Peugeot have worked together before and now, they are at it again. The project they planning together is set to be very “green” and involves the introduction of the Peugeot iOn in Frankfurt this month. If the Peugeot iOn looks familiar to you it’s because it’s simply the Mitsubishi iMiEV sporting Peugeot’s badge up front. The French carmaker plans to launch the lithium ion battery-powered electric car in Europe at the end of 2010.

With 64 horsepower and 132 lb-ft of torque available, Peugeot is stating that the iOn’s range will be 130 km on a full charge. Plugging the car into a conventional 220V outlet will give it a full recharge in six hours. A fast-charger system will also be available, allowing the iOn to be charged to 80% capacity in just half an hour.

More will be revealed when the Frankfurt Motor Show kicks off later this month.

2009 Ford Focus RS vs Mitusbishi Evo X (+video)

June 15th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

Ford Focus RS

Ever since the first reviews of the new Ford Focus RS started coming out, there have been many voices saying it might be better than the Mitsubishi Evo X, even through the corners. British car show Fifth Gear are the first ones to put this bold claim to the test. The shootout sees the cars put through two tests. The first test for the Ford Focus RS and the Mitsubishi Evo X is a handling measure, the second is a straight race around the Fifth Gear test track.

We won’t spoil the surprise by revealing the winner. Watch the 2009 Ford Focus RS vs Mitsubishi Evo X video below.

Mitsubishi preparing i-MiEV for production

June 8th, 2009 by Darren Cottingham

Mitsubishi i-MiEV fq

Mitsubishi has just unveiled the production version of its i-MiEV electric vehicle. The Japanese carmaker will deliver the first units of the i-MiEV domestically to corporate, governmental and local authority users starting from next month. For private motor vehicle users the deliveries of the Mitsubishi i-MiEV will begin in April next year.

The production Mitsubishi i-MiEV is powered by the same electric motor that’s able to run for 160 km on a single charge. The Mitsubishi i-MiEV can be re-charged from a home outlet or from the quick-charge station network that is currently being built in Japan. The electric motor of the Mitsubishi i-MiEV outputs 47kW of power and 180 Nm of torque and prices start in Japan at 4.38 million Yen ($71,000 NZ).